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Re: Tuataras are the roadrunners of molecular evolution.



Cool! I'll download it on Monday.

The tuatara of New Zealand is a unique reptile that
coexisted with dinosaurs and has changed little
morphologically from its Cretaceous relatives.

Not so fast. For example, the closure of the lower temporal bar is secondary, and throughout the Mesozoic rhynchocephalian diversity was non-negligible...


Tuatara have very slow metabolic and growth rates,
long generation times and slow rates of reproduction.
This suggests that the species is likely to exhibit a very
slow rate of molecular evolution.

That's right, but these features are most likely all rather recent.

tuatara have the highest rate of
molecular change recorded in vertebrates.

:-o